Eddie needed something to protect him. He needed to find something he could use as a weapon against the demons. He knew they could not harm him as he was still very much alive. Only just though. The accident could have sent him to the city of souls. The souls, all waiting to be judged. Eddie had made it to the cave. He had looked through the scrolls. He dare not open any, as opening a scroll was the same as using it. It would instantly disappear, and whatever the scroll did was done. You had to know your scrolls. Each had a mark on the scroll. Strange writings, and not all the writings were the same. He looked at one scroll. The symbol for water was on it. Eddie did not know that though. It was the Chinese symbol representing a splashing drop. Even if Eddie did read Chinese, he still would not know what the scroll actually did. Water could mean a lot of things. A flood? Rain? A glass of cool water? The symbol only had meaning to a magi who knew what each one did. Eddie took that scroll anyway. He also took a scroll with some viking ruins on it. Another he took, it had an Egyptian hieroglyph. The hieroglyph was so faded that Eddie could not read it anyway. It had a picture of Maahes on it. A lesser Egyptian god, who was a protector. He would go before the sky bark, the sun boat, eating all the evil before him as he travelled through the underworld or darkness. The hieroglyph for Maahes was a strong man, a warrior with the head of a lion. He was the protector of the weak. Somewhere in the cave was the talisman too. Eddie looked. He could not find it anywhere. 'Where is the talisman?' he asked the voice. The voice did not reply. Eddie knew in his heart that the voice only ever said what Eddie already knew, or suspected he knew. The voice could confirm things, but could never give Eddie any new information. The talisman could protect. He needed it. He was sure that the talisman would allow him to walk into the city of souls, take Slim's soul out of the city with him so that Slim would not face judgement and go to hell. It never occurred to him what might happen to Slim's soul once he rescued him. Where was the talisman? The scrolls were in some sort of special order. Eddie knew that. Somehow, they were organised. Someone must come here. Who? 'Who organises the scrolls?' Eddie asked the voice. 'The Magi does it. Only he can discern all that is meant by the markings.' 'Can I learn to read them? Can I learn to tell what they do?' 'Maybe. The Magi knows them all. He has to. He has to arrange them according to their meanings.' 'Where can I find the Magi?' 'He lives somewhere in the forest.' 'We just came through the forest.' 'No, a different forest.' As the voice spoke it, Eddie realised that he already knew that. He knew it was a lush green forest. Very dark. You had to follow the thin path through it. The shrubs were too closely packed to get through the rest of the forest. Only the path took you places, and it sometimes had many intersections. Nothing was marked either. If you placed a sign post up, the people who lived in the forest would tear it down. They knew their way through the forest, and they did not like outsiders to know it too well. The entire forest was known only to a handful of it's inhabitants. Most of the inhabitants only knew what they needed to know, or only what they chose to know. If they had fresh water, food and wood to keep them warm in winter, then they were happy. They did not understand the fascination some people had for always needing to rush around and go places. Animals gave you clothing and food to eat. The natural vegetation gave you wood for fires, fruit to eat, fibre to make cloth. Why the need to travel? Why the need to rush everywhere? Eddie knew the forest in his mind. He had been there sometime before. Had he met the Magi before? Why did he know the forest? Why was he having trouble remembering why he was there? He remembered the actual physical place. He remembered where some of the paths lead too. Why had he been there? He was thinking these things and searching through the alcoves with the scrolls in them. The scrolls piled into the alcoves, little pigeon holes with five to ten scrolls in each. Suddenly his hand hit something solid. As he removed all the scrolls from t he pigeon hole, he saw a small hole in the bottom. In that hole, was another very tiny scroll and a talisman. The hole was cut to exact specifications to accommodate the talisman and attached scroll. Eddie wedged his fingers into the hole to try to get the scroll and talisman out. He succeeded, and grinned to himself as he held the talisman in his hand. He ripped it off the scroll. To his shock, the scroll rolled open. He had not meant to open the scroll. He feared what it might do. he stood in shocked silence as the scroll did not disappear. It did not activate. How unusual, he thought to himself. He had expected the scroll to dissolve before his eyes and lightning to strike or something. Nothing happened. He looked at one hand with the talisman. he looked at the other with the unraveled scroll. It had writing on it. He looked closely. He could not read it. It was in Hebrew. Eddie did not know that. Eddie looked closer at the talisman and found that it had a piece of leather strap to allow it to be worn by the user. He used both hands to unloop it. Still with the little scroll in his left hand, he held the strap in front of him. He allowed the talisman to hang in front, gently swaying back and forth. He placed the loop over his head and allowed the talisman to fall to his chest. To his horror, his arms shot straight out in front of him, so hard it felt like he damaged his elbow joints. He watched in horror as the scroll dissolved and crumbled in his hand, the dust blowing away in a breeze which he could not feel. The talisman and leather strap turned white hot and started to burn into his flesh. 'Wrong talisman,' said the voice. Eddie did not have a chance to react much. He clenched his teeth together do hard he felt like they would break. His clothes caught fire from the intense heat of the talisman and burned from his body. he fell backwards onto the cave floor. As we watched, he saw the talisman burning into his flesh and start to sink into his chest. The intense white heat burning in unbearable pain into his neck and chest. The talisman slowly sank further and further into his chest till it was level with his skin. Then, his skin started to heal over and the talisman burned into his heart. It burned in a way that made it seem like millions of small burning metal spikes were embedded in his heart. He thought he was going to die. The pain was more intense than anything he had ever felt before. He watched the red bloody skin slowly heal over the hole burned into his chest by the talisman. In seconds the hole was gone and the burning had stopped. The talisman and leather strap had somehow burned their way inside of him. It had become part of him. Whatever this talisman did, Eddie now had the power. The talismans power, was his power.